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X32 Expansion Cards

All About Expansion Cards!

 

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by Drew Brashler in All Posts, Behringer X32
July 24, 2017 5 comments
X32 Expansion Cards

The Behringer X32 Expansion Cards slot is something that is quite useful on the X32 and M32 consoles. Also, all of the versions of the console have it! Today, I want to go through all of the information regarding the use of expansion cards and how they can help us.

Depending on when your X32 was made you may have one of two cards installed. You may have the X-USB or the X-UF card.

 

Behringer X-USB & Klark Teknik DN32-USB

A USB 2.0 interface that provides a simultaneous 32 in and 32 out USB recording/playback interface running at 24-bit and either 44.1kHz or 48kHz sample rate (set to the internal clock of X32). This is the newest version of the card and chances are if you purchased your X32 recently, you have this card.

There is a LOT of functionality to this card, and will cover the needs of a lot of people! Not only do we have the ability to record and playback 32 channels of audio, but we can also use this for tapping into plug-ins on your computer using Waves Multi-Rack Native!

Behringer X-USB

X32 Expansion Cards - X-USB

Klark Teknik DN32-USB

X32 Expansion Cards - DN32-USBManufacturer Specs:

  • USB 2.0 expansion module for MIDAS and BEHRINGER digital consoles
  • 32 bi-directional channels of recording and playback
  • Simultaneous computer audio recording and playback
  • Operates from console USB device clock (48kHz or 44.1kHz)
  • Enables remote control of compatible DAW software via emulations of Mackie Control* and HUI* protocols
  • Seamless computer integration for virtual sound checks and software plug-ins
  • Ultra-low latency ASIO* drivers available for Windows
  • Class-compliant USB design compatible with Mac OS X CoreAudio*
    – no driver required

Behringer X-UF

This is almost the same as the Behringer X-USB card we see above, but it also adds the functionality of FireWire 400 to the card. This is the older version of the card and shipped with the original release of the X32’s.

Behringer X-UF

X32 Expansion Cards - X-UFManufacturer Specs:

  • 32-channel, bi-directional audio interface via USB 2.0 and FireWire
  • Simultaneous 32-in, 32-out audio interface for studio and live recording
  • High-speed 24-bit signal transmission for ultimate signal integrity
  • Seamless connection with any DAW software allows to run “virtual sound checks”
  • Allows employing your PC for “Plug-Ins” and outboard effects processing
  • Ultra-low latency ASIO drivers for Windows PC available, compatible to CoreAudio on Mac OS
  • Enables HUI/Mackie Control* emulation for remote control of any compatible DAW software

 

X-UF & X-USB Driver/Firmware Issues!

Because these are two DIFFERENT cards, there are two different drivers available to install AND two different firmware for the card. When installing either the expansion card firmware or the driver for Windows, make sure to check if you have the X-USB or the X-UF card.

With Mac OS X, you can see that we have compatibility with CoreAudio with both the X-USB and the X-UF cards. This means, plug it in and start recording! No need to install drivers!

 

Recording & Virtual Sound Check

A huge benefit of both of these cards is that we can record 32 channels. Just FYI, the tap for the X32 is before all of the channel processing and is right after the A/D conversion. With that being said, any of your channel processing will NOT be recorded (unless you do some fancy routing like I explain in this blog post: Behringer X32 Recording with Effects).

Now that we have our USB or FireWire interface, we can start recording into our favorite DAW. I know that Reaper is a favorite of a lot of people, so I did a video tutorial on how to get Reaper set up with the X32 and how to get the X32 set up for virtual sound check as well. Take a look at that video here!

Lastly, one of my other favorite DAW tools is Waves Tracks Live. It is a free download from Waves and is one of the easiest ‘virtual sound check’ DAW’s I have worked with so far!

 

Behringer X-DANTE & Klark Teknik DN32-DANTE

This is an Audinate Dante Expansion Card for the Behringer X32 & Midas M32. This card lets us interface our console with Dante Networked Audio. The huge benefit of Dante is that you can route one to one patching inside of the Dante network meaning that you can potentially bypass the ‘block of 8 routing’ inside the console. The only downside is that the main preamp is part of the Dante device so it is separate from the X32. You will still have trim on each channel of -18dB to +18dB of gain adjustment.

One really cool feature of this is that you can do virtual sound checks and/or recording using Dante Virtual Soundcard installed on your computer.

Behringer X-DANTE

X32 Expansion Cards - X-DANTE

Klark Teknik DN32-DANTE

X32 Expansion Cards - DN32-DANTE

Manufacturer Specs:

  • Audinate Dante* expansion module for MIDAS and BEHRINGER digital consoles
  • Up to 32 bi-directional channels @ 48 kHz
  • Enables multichannel recording and playback via Dante Virtual Soundcard* (PC or Mac* computer)
  • Primary and secondary Ethernet interfaces for dual-redundant Dante networking
  • Operates from internal Dante network Precision Time Protocol (PTP) clock
  • Optional Dante Controller software for remote configuration (PC or Mac* computer)
  • LED indicators monitor network activity and speed

 

Behringer X-MADI & Klark Teknik DN32-MADI

This is a MADI Expansion Card for the Behringer X32 and Midas M32 consoles. The real use of this here is for interfacing with other consoles that use MADI! Protocols supported by the DN32-MADI and X-MADI include AES10-1991 with up to 56 x 56 channels, and AES10-2003 with up to 64 x 64 channels.

Another huge benefit is that you can use the BNC as a redundancy when using the Optical connections.

Behringer X-MADI

X32 Expansion Cards - X-MADI

Klark Teknik DN32-MADI

X32 Expansion Cards - DN32-MADI

Manufacturer Specs:

  • 32-channel, bi-directional audio interface via MADI (AES10)
  • Optical duplex SC-plugs (IEC874-19) to connect with fibre optic MADI devices
  • Multimode fibre optic cable length of up to 2 km supported
  • Dual BNC terminals for transmission via standard 75-Ohm coaxial cable of up to 100 m length
  • BNC connectivity can be used as a redundancy network with fibre optic installations
  • Console allows selecting a block of 32 out of up to 64 MADI channels
  • Both MADI formats 56-channel (AES10-1991) and 64-channel (AES10-2003) supported

 

Behringer X-ADAT & Klark Teknik DN32-ADAT

This is an ADAT Expansion Card for the Behringer X32 and Midas M32 consoles. ADAT is a very common connection for a lot of recording gear so this would be a good pairing for some recording studios that utilize ADAT in their studio.

Behringer X-ADAT

X32 Expansion Cards - X-ADAT

Klark Teknik DN32-ADAT

X32 Expansion Cards - DN32-ADAT

Manufacturer Specs:

  • ADAT* expansion module for MIDAS and BEHRINGER digital consoles
  • Up to 32 channels of simultaneous recording and playback @ 48 kHz
  • Features 4 input and 4 output TOSLINK* optical fibre connectors
  • BNC word clock input or output for external clock synchronization
  • Ideal for studio and live recordings with ADAT-equipped HD recorders
  • Optical fibre connections eliminate ground loop interference

 

CymanticuTrack-X32

This card allows direct recording and playback of 32 channels to a USB drive connected to the uTrack-X32 Expansion Card! For those needing to play to backing tracks and wanting a really simple & compact setup, this card might be able to suit your needs!

Upon first glance we see that there is an HDD USB slot AND a USB connection for your computer. The uTrack-X32 does work in a similar way to the X-USB and X-UF cards in that it can use USB 2.0 to input & output 32 channels. However, you are only able to use either the HDD or the USB. If a hard drive is connected to the HDD slot, the USB connection is disconnected

Cymantic uTrack-X32

Manufacturer Specs:

  • 32 channel recording directly from your console, no computer or tablet needed
  • Simple one-button “Push and Go” user interface to record
  • Remote control with uRemote software (Android, Win, IOS, OS X)
  • USB computer audio interface for Windows, OS X and iOS (32-input, 32-output)
  • Recorder features:
    • 32 tracks of recording or playback (up to 48kHz/24bits)
    • “Pre-Record” mode ensures you never miss a downbeat again
    • Conveniently create new takes during ongoing recording
    • Works with user-supplied, off the shelf USB hard drive for storage
    • Recording time limited only by size of USB storage
  • Playback features (NEW)

    • Playback pre-defined playlists with custom start-modes
    • “Instant Play” feature pre-loads playlist songs in memory to be played back instantly from uRemote
    • Edit playback song order on the fly with uRemote
    • Gapless playback with multiple songs using the no-delay start mode
    • Playback songs withing a folder with different playback modes (single, continuos, shuffle etc)
  • Ethernet network interface for remote control from uRemote software
  • Free uRemote applications for Windows, OS X, iOS and Android
  • Free uTool software applications for Windows and OS X

 

Waves X-WSG

Now, THIS one I am really excited about!

Also, I have some exciting news about this, but I can’t tell any of you just yet. Keep an eye out in the coming months or subscribe to my e-mail list and I will let you know when I can!

This is an interface card for adding Waves SoundGrid capibility to the Behringer X32 and Midas M32 consoles. With this setup, one can insert Waves plugins on potentially all of the 32 inputs of the console and run some really incredible plugins like the Waves C6, Waves CLA-76 or even the Waves SSL plugins.

Additionally, you can also run Waves Track Live at the same time to record 32 channels of audio as using Waves SoundGrid for the plugins!

Waves X-WSG

Behringer X32 X-WSG

Manufacturer Specs:

  • Designed for X32 and M32 live mixing consoles
  • Mix, play back and record with SoundGrid-compatible plugins in extremely low latency
  • 32 I/O channels of audio
  • 44.1 and 48 kHz sample rates
  • Clock Sync-over-Ethernet (SoE) for digital splits and audio networking
  • Redundancy and recovery options
  • Connects your console to the plugin processing power of SoundGrid servers
  • Compatible with standard computers and switches
  • Comes with the SoundGrid Studio Application for ASIO/Core Audio recording and playback

 

Installing Expansion Cards

Installation of the expansion cards is fairly easy! Grab a Phillips screw driver and remove the two screws on the right and left side of the card, then simply pull the card out. Slide the new card in and then replace the screws!

 

Routing for the Expansion Cards

This is where we have to really think about input and outputs because the terminology can get confusing pretty fast! The X32/M32 has it’s Input Routing and Output Routing all in the Routing section on the console. To get there, press the ‘Routing’ button to the side of the LCD screen.

The ‘Home’ tab is where we get our input routing for the console itself. In normal operation, we are pulling from the Local 1-32 as these are the inputs of the X32/M32. Some of you might be pulling from AES50 if utilizing the digital snakes.

The ‘Card Out’ tab is where we route to the input of the expansion card. Typically, you will want to have this set to the same routing as your ‘Home’ tab. That way you can get your inputs of the console into the expansion card. If using a digital snake, we would want to change these to the AES50 routing so that the digital snake inputs will also show up on your expansion card.

 

Virtual Sound Check (What about Card Outs?)

This is the spot that a lot will get confused. Because technically the ‘Card Out’ is the input of the expansion card. But the output of the expansion card will show up in the routing block list as Card 1-32. So, if you are trying to get virtual sound check set up for the multitrack recording that you just made, you need to go to the ‘Home’ tab and select Card 1-32. This will now have the input of your console be the output of the expansion card!

 

Take away!

Hopefully, for some of you, this clears up a lot about the expansion card slot. Also, hopefully, I have saved you some time with installing Windows drivers for your X-UF or X-USB card (please check again!). But to be honest, I am super excited about something with the Waves X-WSG card, but I still….can’t tell you about it yet!

One additional thing that I do want to mention is that if you are needing a backing tracks playing device, use a Behringer X32 Core! You can use the built in X-USB (or X-UF) card to connect to your tracks computer, then use AES50 from the X32 Core to your main X32! It is a really slick way of getting tracks to your X32 and you don’t have to lug around additional digital snakes or hardwired snakes to get it connected!

5 Comments
  1. Milton Richards says:

    Thanks for the article, Drew. The routing for the X-USB was always confusing to me. I have been unsuccessfully trying to connect the X-32 to Adobe Audition running on my computer. Now it works! Thanks a bunch!

    1. dbbaudio says:

      That is amazing Milton! Glad to help!

  2. Martin says:

    Hey Drew,
    do you wanna se a pict of the Xlive recording card?

    1. dbbaudio says:

      I haven’t heard of that one. Sure, Email it over to support@dbbaudio.zendesk.com.

      Thanks!

  3. Dale Clyne says:

    Thank Drew,
    Great job again!
    Didn’t know about some of those cards.
    Thanks,
    Dale Clyne

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GET THE X32 ROUTING WORKSHEET FOR FREE!

I FOUND THAT OVER THE YEARS, HAVING MY ROUTING WRITTEN DOWN NOT ONLY MADE MY JOB EASIER BUT IT MADE ME FASTER AT MY JOB!

AS A THANK YOU FOR COMING TODAY, I WANT TO GIVE IT TO YOU!

it's 100% free!
100% Privacy Guarantee! Adobe PDF Reader required.